Talk to an expert from Relationship Hero for personalized relationship advice

16 types of women you should avoid (unless you’re up for a challenge)

Disclosure: this page may contain affiliate links to select partners. We receive a commission should you choose to make a purchase after clicking on them. Read our affiliate disclosure.

While labels don’t do anyone any favors, it’s fair to say there are some characteristics and traits that make someone a more challenging partner. Unless you are prepared to meet that challenge, it’s best to steer clear of women who embody the following things.

1. The one who always plays the victim.

Some people just don’t accept any responsibility. Nothing is their fault. Everything that went wrong in their last relationship was their ex’s doing, and you can bet that if you get involved, any problems will be your fault. Let’s be clear, we are not talking about women who actually have been a victim (and there are plenty of those), we’re talking about women who for one reason or another, never learned that it’s ok to make mistakes and own up to them. So, unless you want to end up being blamed for every conflict in your relationship, steer clear.

2. The excessively jealous one.

We all get a little jealous from time to time, it’s natural and normal. But if you meet someone and she’s interrogating you about female colleagues and family friends on your first dates, heed the alarm bells. As long as you’re not giving her a legitimate reason to feel jealous and insecure, there should be trust. If there isn’t, it’s a sign she has some deeper issues that will need to be worked through if it’s going to be a viable relationship. 

3. The one with a string of “bad” exes.

Unless this woman has never been in a relationship before, she’s likely to have at least one dud ex. They’re an ex for a reason, after all. But if she seems to have a list as long as her arm of mean, toxic, or cheating exes, you may want to question why and whether getting involved is a good idea. There could be a variety of explanations, none of which are likely to spell happiness for you.

4. The one who won’t ever compromise.

Everyone knows relationships are all about compromise. So, if you find yourself faced with the prospect of dating someone who seems pathologically set in her ways and unable to accommodate yours, think twice. It’ll only get worse as time goes on, as people’s behaviors and resistance to change tend to get more ingrained as the relationship progresses. 

5. The emotionally unavailable one.

Some people find cold, aloof women attractive. Perhaps they give off an unattainable or classy air that makes them appealing. But this is likely to wear thin once you’re in a relationship and looking for mutual support and connection that just isn’t there. It could be that she just needs some time to feel safe and secure enough to relax, and that’s ok. But if she’s a closed book, with no intention of opening up, you need to ask yourself whether she’s right for you.

6. The co-dependent one.

It’s great when you can share your life with someone, but if that someone wants to be present for every second of your life, you’ve got a problem. It’s likely she’s insecure or doesn’t feel complete on her own and thinks you can complete her. Whilst that might seem endearing at first, it soon becomes suffocating. If she’s not prepared to work on healthy boundaries for both of you, stay away.

7. The materialistic one.

It’s a sad fact that some people (female and male) marry for money. If you want a shallow, loveless relationship, that’s likely to end as soon as you stop bringing home the bucks, by all means, proceed. If you don’t, heed the red flags. If she’s talking heavily about money, possessions, or your financial aspirations from the get-go, be wary. Unless, of course, she’s also super career-driven and you’re a materialist too.  

8. The manipulator.

Deep down, most of us want to get our own way in relationships, and that’s ok. But we learn to compromise and take the wins when we can. Not a manipulator though. If someone is constantly using guilt trips, emotions, or physical affection (either giving or withholding) to get what she wants, even when it’s not in the best interests of the relationship, it’s a massive red flag. A relationship is about give and take, and if you’re always giving, you’ll eventually run out and give up.

9. The one who never says sorry.

There are (at least) two people in every relationship, and nothing is ever only one party’s fault. If a woman you’re involved with cannot accept any responsibility for their part in misunderstandings or disagreements or can’t say sorry, you need to think hard about what that will be like long term. You might not mind taking the blame for things early on whilst you’re trying to put your best foot forward, but you’ll be pretty bitter and resentful if it’s still going on 10 years down the line.

10. The one who needs all eyes on her.

An attention-seeking woman can seem quite appealing at first. After all, it’s probably how she caught your attention. But it wears thin quickly. She’ll want your attention 24/7 (and probably every other man’s) and you’ll inevitably struggle to keep up. You have other demands after all. She’ll likely create more and more drama to feed her desire and eventually, you’ll both end up miserable and not getting what you need.

11. The total pessimist.

Unless you’re also a pessimist who’s looking for someone to wallow in self-pity with, partnering up with a negative person rarely ends well. We usually show our best selves at the start of a courtship, so if this person is already showing you pessimism and negativity, it’s a pretty clear indicator of the misery and hopelessness you can look forward to in your later years together.

12. The one who’s looking for a white knight.

A lot of men grow up with the fairytale idea of saving a damsel in distress. But rarely is it as romantic as it sounds. A man cannot always fix a woman’s problems, and vice versa. So, unless this damsel is looking for a knight to stand alongside her to offer support whilst she works through her problems, the knight is best off knocking at another castle door.   

13. The one who is still hung up on her ex.

It’s never a good sign if she talks a lot about her ex. Especially on the first date. It’s a sign she hasn’t moved on and may be using you to try and do so, either intentionally or unconsciously. Of course, talk of ex-partners will eventually come up when you’re dating someone new, and that’s ok. But if it’s frequent or impassioned, be warned.

14. The one who can’t or won’t deal with her trauma.

We don’t talk about this one lightly. There will be plenty of women who have experienced trauma, and they deserve to be in happy, healthy relationships as much as anyone else. If you meet someone with unresolved trauma and you’re in the position to handle that and support her to overcome it, by all means, do. But if she’s not ready or willing to seek help for her trauma, or she’s ready, but you don’t have the mental or emotional capacity to support her, do both of yourselves a kindness and give this relationship a miss.

15. The one you have absolutely nothing in common with.

Don’t be fooled by the old saying. Yes, a few opposite traits or interests might attract, but if you have zero in common with this woman, it’s highly unlikely to work. Unless, of course, you love hearing about and doing things you have no interest in whatsoever. If you do, then I guess it turns out you have something in common after all.

16. The control freak.

A woman who takes control can be appealing, particularly if you’re not one for getting things done. But it becomes problematic when you do want a little control, and she won’t relinquish it. So be sure to test the waters early if you see you’re dealing with a woman who likes to be in charge of everything. If you like to be bossed around and micro-managed, go for it. If you don’t, you might want to steer clear. There’s no such thing as a recovering control freak.


Women and men alike can display these traits or behaviors, and whether we experience them or not, and to what extent, will often be heavily influenced by our upbringing and previous relationships, as well as our personality type and temperament. What makes a relationship viable or not, is whether we are prepared to work on any problematic traits or behaviors we have. We all have baggage. If the person you’re interested in is aware of theirs, keen to work on it, and you’re up for the challenge, go for it. If they’re not, or you’re not, you’re both better off steering clear.